What Are Common Symptoms and Causes of Back Pain?
Back pain is one of the leading reasons why people seek medical assistance. It is also one of the main reasons that people call off work and one of the biggest reasons adults under 45 years old apply for disability. But what are the main causes of back pain?
In most cases, back pain will subside after a few hours, days or even weeks with home remedies. However, if your back pain continues after a few weeks, you should seek medical attention. As well, you should see a doctor if you experience any of the following:
- Back pain accompanied by bladder or bowel issues
- Back pain is a direct result of an injury or fall
- The pain spreads down to your legs and below the knee, or you have tingling, weakness, numbing or loss of movement in one or both legs
- If you have a fever along with the pain
- If you are experiencing sudden, unexplained weight loss
- If you have chronic back pain after the age of 50 and have not experienced it previously
- If there is a history of osteoporosis or cancer in your family
Risk Factors For Back Pain
- High BMI
- Diseases such as arthritis, fibromyalgia and cancer
- Not lifting things properly
- Stress, depression and anxiety
- Lack of exercise and poor diet
Common Causes of Back Pain
- Degenerative disc disease
- Slipped or herniated discs
- Inflammation of the sacroiliac joint
- Heavy Lifting
- Cervical radiculopathy (pinched nerve)
- Spinal stenosis (narrowing of the spinal cord)
- Bulging discs
- Scoliosis (curvature of the spine)
- Kidney stones (and other kidney issues)
How to Prevent Back Pain
- Proper posture
- Lift properly (bend your knees and lift with your legs, not your back, do not twist your body while lifting)
- Avoid heavy lifting. Ask for assistance when needed.
- Get enough sleep at night.
- Proper diet.
- Maintain a healthy weight
- Exercise regularly
- Do not sit for extended periods of time. Get up and take a quick walk every 2 hours.
- Do not smoke.
- Sit up straight. Do not slouch over.
- Practice yoga and or meditation
- Do stretches and back strengthening exercises
- Stay active. Do not remain sedentary for long periods of time.
- Proper nutrition: Get enough iron, calcium and vitamin D.
Anyone can develop back pain at any point of their life. If your back pain lasts for longer than a few weeks or is severe, schedule an appointment with a chiropractor. They can determine if x rays, an MRI and further treatment is needed.